I am working on adding a new provider to Qiskit, and I have to specify the properties of the backend. What is "gate length" (in ns) referring to?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ It's the time needed to execute a certain gate. $\endgroup$
    – KAJ226
    Sep 16, 2021 at 14:51

1 Answer 1


This is the same as Gate time or the time needed to execute that certain gate.

If you look at the calibration data description of a specific device through the IBMQ website, and you will see that there is an option to see the CNOT gate time. For example, if you select your backend to be ibmq_santiago then you can see something like: enter image description here

Note the $CNOT_{q0,q1}$ gate has the Gate time of 526 ns. And now if you extract the gate length from backendproperties of this gate, you get the same number. That is, if you run the following script:

from qiskit import IBMQ
provider = IBMQ.load_account()
backend = provider.get_backend('ibmq_santiago')
print(backend.properties().gates[26].parameters[1]  )

you get:

Nduv(datetime.datetime(2021, 9, 13, 7, 30, 48, tzinfo=tzlocal()), gate_length, ns, 526.2222222222222)

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